They tainted Ballari's image, we restored it, says Modi

They tainted Ballari's image, we restored it, says Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday sought to touch upon the sentiment of local pride by saying that the Ballari region had a rich history, heritage and was blessed with immense natural resources, but the Congress was trying to besmirch its reputation.

The Congress was running a disinformation campaign in the country and abroad that Ballari was a land of thieves and looters. But the BJP-led government at the Centre had restored the region's glory by printing the stone chariot of Hampi on the Rs-50 note, the prime minister said.

"The Vijayanagar empire had shown the way in punishing the invaders. But the Congress is trying to taint this history for its politics," Modi said and called the state government 'Sidda Rupai Sarkar'. 

The Congress has plunged Karnataka in debts, but the ministers' chests are full of wealth. The people of the district and state should hold those in power accountable, he said. 

The Congress staged a drama of a padayatra to Ballari, but failed to formulate a mining policy during its five-year rule, Modi said.

He also attacked the state government for utilising only Rs 37 lakh out of the Rs 9,000 crore collected under the prime minister's mineral development project. 

Modi attacked UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi for forgetting the Rs 3,000-crore package announced for the district after she won the Ballari seat in the 1999 Lok Sabha elections. 

The BJP chose Abdul Kalam in the past and Ram Nath Kovind now for the President's post while making Venkaiah Naidu the Vice President. Nirmala Sitharaman is the first woman Defence Minister, he said, adding that all this answers the Congress' criticism that the BJP is a Brahmanic, North India, anti-minority, anti-dalit and male-centric party.